Today we’re joined by Hallopino. Hallopino is a fantastically talented artist who specializes in comics and cartooning. They had a table near mine at last year’s Indy PopCon and I wish I had known that earlier! Because Hallopino is an amazing visual storyteller, judging from what I’ve seen of their work. The images they sent along with their interview drew me in immediately. My thanks to them for taking the time to participate in this interview.
Please, tell us about your art.
I always been a bit of a jack of all trades. Which can also mean master of none. I’ve split focus a lot between writing, drawing and photography, with varying levels of success. Been working to focus more on cartooning again, it is the thing I picked first and the most reliable way of telling a story that I enjoy telling in my opinion.
What inspires you?
I love the mix of the extraordinary and the mundane. The cosmic force that can fight galactic monsters, but struggles to send a text. I tend to find that is the sweet spot of entertainment where it’s both can be engaging or funny depending on how you balance it. So it does come from a mix of looking at other stories and the real world.
What got you interested in your field? Have you always wanted to be an artist?
I just fell in love with comic strips immediately as a kid. It just connected to me in a way that never let go. Even when I went a different path because making comic was closed to me, I eventually found my way back to it. I love the visual element and I can tell the stories that come to me.
Do you have any kind of special or unique signature, symbol, or feature you include in our work that you’d be willing to reveal?
There has been a couple over the years. Signature has changed more recently into more of a symbol that is included in each piece. It tends to be more obvious. When storytelling, I tend to omit eyebrows on the character that is my stand in. Came out of an old strip where a character had carelessly burned off their eye brows.
What advice would you give young aspiring artists?
I think math and science can be a key to improved art. It’s been countless times where it helps me be a better cartoonist, graphic designer, and photographer, because of having that baseline knowledge.
Where on the spectrum do you identify?
I normally just say Ace. I may slide more into grey. But it comes up so rarely, that I’m not exactly splitting hairs over it.
Have you encountered any kind of ace prejudice or ignorance in your field? If so, how do you handle it?
It’s more ignorance. There is the common requirement that every story has to have a romance. I know I’ve put it in some early stories. But I feel much more confident about not going down that road. As an much as the romance is required for most. In comic strips and super heroic stories, they can focus elsewhere. It is discouraging seeing fans react to two people having affection for each other as instantly romantic or sexual. As if the concept that someone could be friends, or not think about sex is somehow an abstract a thought that is entirely elusive.
What’s the most common misconception about asexuality that you’ve encountered?
It’s largely the combination of that it’s either doesn’t exist, or that they would just moan about having an asexual week because they couldn’t get laid. Both are dismissive to the idea.
What advice would you give to any asexual individuals out there who might be struggling with their orientation?
Just know that what you are feeling is true. Don’t let someone demean or talk you into something that doesn’t feel right. The discovery process can be hard for some people, and I know I’ve had moments on the road that I wish I wouldn’t have happened. Be careful.
Finally, where can people find out more about your work?
I have my main site at Hallopino.com, where I will be posting new comics as they are ready later this year.
Also on Tumblr (hallopino.tumblr.com) I’m posting a new sketch every single day.
Thank you, Hallopino, for participating in this interview and this project. It’s very much appreciated.